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New-to-me HP-71B
11-23-2019, 07:08 PM
Post: #1
New-to-me HP-71B
A couple of years ago, I sold off all my HP-71B equipment when I was trying to whittle down my vintage stash. Not only did I not really whittle down my stash very much, I regretted not having any HP-71B any more.

Recently, I saw an excellent early HP-71B on TAS, I couldn't resist, and I managed to snag it up:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/HP-71B-palm-top...true&rt=nc

I received it today. Serial number 2437A00145. I decode that to the 2nd week in September, 1984. I thought that it would have ROM 1AAAA, but it has ROM 1BBBB. I thought that ROM 1BBBB came out in September 1984, but I didn't know when in September. Maybe it was right at the beginning of September?

Anyway, I am thrilled to have an HP71B again, in excellent shape, too. It passes all the self checks, and I've keyed in a couple of BASIC programs, as I wait for my HP-IL interface module to arrive:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/HP-IL-Interface...2749.l2649

An observation I made was, wow, have TAS prices for HP-71B items gone sky high! There seems to be one Seller there who has a lot of different items, and is asking the sky & moon for them. Whew! I don't know how much is actually being bought at those prices? Luckily, I got a reasonable deal on Both my HP-71B and the HPIL module, too.

Thanks for listening!

smp
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11-23-2019, 09:19 PM
Post: #2
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
It's actually week 37 of 1984 so your assumption about the release of ROM 1BBBB may still be correct.

There are only 10 types of people in this world. Those who understand binary and those who don't.
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11-23-2019, 09:38 PM
Post: #3
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
I just acquired a HP71B too. Mine came wirh the HP-IL module although it wasn't advertised, so it was a great surprise Smile

The serial number is 2406A00033 but the ROM version is also 1BBBB so it is supposed to have been built in february. Are you sure about the dates?

I am also looking at peripherals and will surely end up spending more money. Any source of cheap HP-IL cables?


10B 11C 12C 12CP 15C 17BII 19BII 21 25 28S 32E 32S 32SII 33S 34S 35S 39gs 39GII 41C 41CX 42S 45 48G 48G+ 49G 49G+ 67 71B 97
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11-23-2019, 10:31 PM
Post: #4
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
71B machines as far back as 2404A... are all ROM version 1BBBB. The only confirmed 1AAAA unit reported here (since I started collecting info) is from 2401A, though I believe another unit from the same week was v1BBBB, so this is likely the week the change took place.

I'll also note that a 2405A machine has been reported to have v1AAAA. I own one also from 2405A, 27 units "younger" and it has 1BBBB, so I believe this 1AAAA unit is a frankencalc of some kind.

Further, 0AAAA units have been reported as well, though clearly pre-production/prototype machines.

Congrats on having a 71B again. Still the best machine of them all.

--Bob Prosperi
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11-24-2019, 01:18 AM
Post: #5
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
.
Hi, congratulations on your new acquisition, the wonderful HP-71B, the best HP calculator of them all (though the HP-15C and the HP42S are close behind).

To try and test it to the max, you may want to have a look at the following Articles I wrote which extensively discuss and feature the HP-71B:

Long Live the HP-71B, (full description and history, includes a Text Stereograms generator program)
HP-71B Modest Mater, (program to solve Mate-in-N chess problems)
HP-71B Math ROM Bakers Dozen (Vol. 1), (many tips and useful code snippets, first part)
HP-71B Math ROM Bakers Dozen (Vol. 2), ((many tips and useful code snippets, second part))
HP-71B Short and Sweet Sudoku Solver, (program to solve any Sudoku puzzle)
HP-71B Sudoku Solver Sublime Sequel, (enhancement to the program to solve any Sudoku puzzle)
HP-71B Sudoku Generator and Coach, (program to generate new Sudoku puzzles and coach you to manually solve any puzzle)
HP-71B Fantastic FOUR, (multiprecision multiplication using Fast Fourier Transforms)
HP-71B Minimax Polynomial Fit, (program to fit a set of data to the very best possible polynomial)
25 years of Othello, (program to play Othello versus the machine)
Small Fry - Primes Acounting, (routine to very quickly count primes on a given interval with excellent accuracy)
Small Fry - Let's Be Rational, (routine to convert reals to fractions and find their continued fracton form)
Boldly Going - Matrix Square Root, (routine to compute the square root of a given matrix)
Boldly Going - Identifying Constants, (program to find the symbolic expression which results in a given value, with many uses)

Beside the above articles, all of which do include an HP-71B program, you can find the following four additional HP-71B programs written by me, just follow this link:

HP Calculator Programs:

HP Program VA710 - HP-71B Producing Digits of Pi one at a time

3-page paper featuring a 6-line proof-of-concept BASIC program written in 1996 for the HP-71B pocket computer to produce an arbitrary number of digits of Pi one at a time using a so-called spigot algorithm. A sample run computing 1,000 digits of Pi is given.

HP Program VA711 - HP-71B Exact Integer Determinants and Permanents

3-page paper featuring a 5-line BASIC subprogram for the HP-71B to evaluate determinants and permanents for real or complex NxN matrices. Unlike other methods where floating-point divisions are involved, if the elements are moderately-sized integers the integer results will be exact, even for singular or very ill-conditioned matrices. Two worked examples are included.

HP Program VA712 - HP-71B Multiprecision E and its roots

3-page paper featuring a 5-line BASIC program I wrote in 1990 for the HP-71B which can quickly compute up to 35,500 digits of Euler’s constant e and its roots (square root, cubic root, etc.). Five worked examples are included.

HP Program VA713 - HP-71B Packing Long Integers

3-page paper featuring a small assembly-language LEX file written in 1991 for the HP-71B pocket computer to pack long integers in the range from 0 to 16,777,215 into 3-character strings and, conversely, to unpack a 3-character string into the equivalent long integer value.

Best regards and enjoy ! Smile
V.

  
Find All My HP-related Materials here:  Valentin Albillo's HP Collection
 
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11-24-2019, 08:55 AM
Post: #6
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-24-2019 01:18 AM)Valentin Albillo Wrote:  To try and test it to the max, you may want to have a look at the following Articles I wrote which extensively discuss and feature the HP-71B:

Gracias Valentín! Sigo tus posts y artículos hace mucho tiempo pero todavía me parece ciencia ficción empezar a rascar solo un poco la superficie... Aunque seguiré intentándolo Smile

Thank you Valentin! I have been a follower of your posts and articles for a long time but it is still science fiction for me even to just scratch the surface... Nevertheless I'll keep trying Smile


10B 11C 12C 12CP 15C 17BII 19BII 21 25 28S 32E 32S 32SII 33S 34S 35S 39gs 39GII 41C 41CX 42S 45 48G 48G+ 49G 49G+ 67 71B 97
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11-24-2019, 09:18 AM
Post: #7
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
I own a early HP-71 with serial 2401A00286 with the ROM version 1BBBB.
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11-24-2019, 05:06 PM
Post: #8
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
.
Hi, hola Moggul:

(11-24-2019 08:55 AM)Moggul Wrote:  Thank you Valentin! I have been a follower of your posts and articles for a long time but it is still science fiction for me even to just scratch the surface... Nevertheless I'll keep trying Smile

[EN]
Thank you very much for your appreciation and kind words. I've seen in your profile that you're located in Spain so I'm sending you a PM next week. Best regards.

[ES]
Gracias por tu apreciación y amables palabras. He visto en tu perfil que resides en España, te enviaré un PM la semana que viene. Saludos.

V.

  
Find All My HP-related Materials here:  Valentin Albillo's HP Collection
 
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11-24-2019, 06:46 PM
Post: #9
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-23-2019 07:08 PM)smp Wrote:  An observation I made was, wow, have TAS prices for HP-71B items gone sky high! There seems to be one Seller there who has a lot of different items, and is asking the sky & moon for them. Whew! I don't know how much is actually being bought at those prices? Luckily, I got a reasonable deal on Both my HP-71B and the HPIL module, too.

Indeed, that seller has outrageous prices. A recent example is he acquired a complete 71B, probably for not more than $100-150, then splits the bundle and posts the following items on the Bay:

71B & QRG (with missing HP-IL device and HP-IL Port cover): $319
71B HP-IL module & QRG: $189
71B soft case (called leather in the listing, he knows it's vinyl): $115
71B Surveying Module (maybe not from the same machine?): $189

So, a tidy $473 to $662 profit. And note that the individual items are listed at separate times to make the whole charade less obvious.

I'd like to say this seller is being immoral or at least disingenuous, but I have no proof of any of that, and can only conclude selfish and/or greedy.

Personally, I recommend buyers here not purchase from such a seller, as it only serves to increase market prices overall, and you may be the person that has to pay more the next time.

--Bob Prosperi
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11-24-2019, 07:03 PM
Post: #10
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-24-2019 06:46 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  I'd like to say this seller is being immoral or at least disingenuous, but I have no proof of any of that, and can only conclude selfish and/or greedy.

Personally, I recommend buyers here not purchase from such a seller, as it only serves to increase market prices overall, and you may be the person that has to pay more the next time.

What's immoral about buying low and selling high? The price he paid is irrelevant. He's free to try to sell it for as much as he can get. Just because he advertises at a certain price doesn't mean he'll get it. How is he being disingenuous? He's not lying about anything is he? Selfish? Maybe. Greedy? Could be. It reminds me of a story (as most situations do!)

A little girl set up a lemonade stand. She had a sign in front of it: Lemonade: $1000.00 a glass

A person stopped by and said, "I don't think you'll sell much lemonade at that price!" The girl answered: "At this price I only have to sell one!"

Tom L
I'm pining for the Fjords
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11-24-2019, 07:16 PM (This post was last modified: 11-24-2019 07:20 PM by Valentin Albillo.)
Post: #11
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-24-2019 06:46 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  
(11-23-2019 07:08 PM)smp Wrote:  An observation I made was, wow, have TAS prices for HP-71B items gone sky high! There seems to be one Seller there who has a lot of different items, and is asking the sky & moon for them.

Indeed, that seller has outrageous prices.


Taking into account those $115 asked for a soft vinyl case you mention I wonder what would he/she/it charge for a 71B Math ROM or a 71B Forth/Assembler ROM, it would surely make headlines !

Best regards.
V.

  
Find All My HP-related Materials here:  Valentin Albillo's HP Collection
 
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11-24-2019, 11:20 PM
Post: #12
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-24-2019 07:03 PM)toml_12953 Wrote:  What's immoral about buying low and selling high? The price he paid is irrelevant. He's free to try to sell it for as much as he can get. Just because he advertises at a certain price doesn't mean he'll get it. How is he being disingenuous? He's not lying about anything is he? Selfish? Maybe. Greedy? Could be.

As I noted, I've no evidence of immoral or disingenuous behavior (though calling the case "leather" when he knows otherwise would satisfy this) so I stuck to what's clear: Selfish and Greedy. And I'm not suggesting he can't or even shouldn't do this; my only suggestion was that folks not buy there, thus encouraging such behavior. But there's little doubt that it has worked as he's been doing this for years, periodically changing seller names, with prices increasing almost each and every time an item is listed.

He's free to sell them, I'm free to comment on it. Ain't democracy great?

--Bob Prosperi
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11-25-2019, 02:53 AM (This post was last modified: 11-25-2019 05:29 AM by Dave Frederickson.)
Post: #13
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
Unless you need the portability of the battery powered HP-IL peripherals or simply have a desire from a collector's perspective, I suggest you steer clear of the physical HP-IL peripherals. Rather, get a PIL-Box from J-F Garnier. Among other things, this would give you access to the LIF library.

Also, my 1AAAA has serial number 240100147.
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11-25-2019, 03:47 AM
Post: #14
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
Serial number 2401A00190 -> VER$ -> HP71:1BBBB
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11-25-2019, 12:45 PM (This post was last modified: 11-25-2019 12:59 PM by smp.)
Post: #15
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-25-2019 02:53 AM)Dave Frederickson Wrote:  Unless you need the portability of the battery powered HP-IL peripherals or simply have a desire from a collector's perspective, I suggest you steer clear of the physical HP-IL peripherals. Rather, get a PIL-Box from J-F Garnier. Among other things, this would give you access to the LIF library.

Also, my 1AAAA has serial number 240100147.

Luckily for me, I never got rid of my PIL-Box. I have it all ready to go. The latest Anaconda, pyILPer, and LIFUtils are all installed on my MacBook Pro. Just waiting for the arrival of my HP-IL module!

smp
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11-25-2019, 12:55 PM (This post was last modified: 11-25-2019 12:57 PM by smp.)
Post: #16
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-25-2019 03:47 AM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  Serial number 2401A00190 -> VER$ -> HP71:1BBBB

Wow. This is very interesting to me. For whatever reason, I thought that the HP-71B was announced on 1 February 1984 (page 89 in A Guide to HP Handheld Calculators and Computers). To me, that means HP-71Bs made then would have ROM 1AAAA. I always believed that ROM 1BBBB came in September 1984, and went on until 2CCCC arrived in March 1985. Am I mistaken with my dates? It certainly appears so with reports of serial numbers indicating HP-71Bs with ROM 1BBBB in week 1 of 1984.

Since I'm mistaken, does anyone know the accurate timeline?

smp
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11-25-2019, 01:26 PM
Post: #17
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-25-2019 12:55 PM)smp Wrote:  Since I'm mistaken, does anyone know the accurate timeline?

According to http://www.jeffcalc.hp41.eu/emu71/bug71.html:

HP71:1AAAA Jul, 25, 1983 12:10pm
HP71:1BBBB Sep, 2, 1983 12:11pm
HP71:2CCCC Mar, 5, 1985 12:10pm
HP71:2CDCC Mar, 5, 1985 12:10pm

The author explains on that page why the last two datestamps are the same.
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11-25-2019, 01:39 PM
Post: #18
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-25-2019 01:26 PM)brierand Wrote:  According to http://www.jeffcalc.hp41.eu/emu71/bug71.html:

HP71:1AAAA Jul, 25, 1983 12:10pm
HP71:1BBBB Sep, 2, 1983 12:11pm
HP71:2CCCC Mar, 5, 1985 12:10pm
HP71:2CDCC Mar, 5, 1985 12:10pm

The author explains on that page why the last two datestamps are the same.

Thanks very much for this. It does not make sense to me that, if HP switched to the 1BBBB ROM in September 1983, then announced the HP-71B in February 1984, and they were not yet available for purchase until later (the HP Journal in July 1984 was about the HP-71B, so I assume it was not available for purchase until mid-1984), why would anyone have received an HP-71B with ROM 1AAAA? I would assume that HP would never have let any of those out at all.

I'm quite confused!

smp
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11-25-2019, 03:12 PM
Post: #19
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
Since I've been collecting SN/Version info that folks have posted here, these are the units bordering the ROM version changes:

2401A00147 1AAAA
2401A00190 1BBBB
...
2713A00041 1BBBB
2718A00112 2CCCC
...
2745A00015 2CCCC
2810A00038 2CDCC


Another unit listed on eBay was reported to have Ver. 1AAAA with SN 2405A00331, but this is suspected of being a frankencalc as at least 4 other units prior to this were reported with Ver. 1BBBB, including one only 27 units prior from the same week.

I don't recall the exact purchase date, but I bought my 71B well before mid-84, as I was living in SoCal at the time, attending weekly PPC meetings; we knew immediately when EduCalc had stock, then just a quick drive to go get it.


For the 71B HP-IL Module, the analogous reported changeover version/dates are:

1A 8531
1B 8603

If anyone has a unit that narrows these gaps and thus better clarifies the data of the ROM version change, PLEASE POST YOUR SN/Version.

--Bob Prosperi
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11-25-2019, 08:25 PM
Post: #20
RE: New-to-me HP-71B
(11-25-2019 03:12 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  I don't recall the exact purchase date, but I bought my 71B well before mid-84, as I was living in SoCal at the time, attending weekly PPC meetings; we knew immediately when EduCalc had stock, then just a quick drive to go get it.

The initial EduCALC catalog from 1984, #19, featured the 71B on its cover. Also, for what it is worth, the December, 1983 issue (V10N10) of the PPC Calculator Journal featured a bunch of early 71B articles, including the Hewlett-Packard press release, announcing the 71B. (The date was obviously typed in wrong, as it says January 9, 1983 - and should have said 1984.)

Likewise, the Volume 2 Number 6 (Nov/Dec 1983) issue of the Computer Journal of PPC contained a handful of 71B articles, plus the accompanying member letter mentioned the machine, along with the line "The new machine is going to be shown at the Winter Consumer Show, January 7-10, 1984." This issue also included Jim De Arras' 3-and-a-half-page article "An Inside Look at the HP-71B" and both newsletters had Joe Horn's "HP-71B: How Fast?" article. I am sure that there were units sold in the early part of 1984.
Jake
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